Pregnant women who have not been vaccinated against COVID-19 have a higher risk of severe symptoms and newborn death in case they are infected with the deadly virus. According to a new study, published in the monthly journal Nature Medicine, pregnant women who have not been inoculated with COVID-19 vaccines were more likely to be hospitalized when compared to those fully vaccinated. The study, which has been peer-reviewed, assessed over 144,000 pregnancy records in Scotland. While the record dated back to March 2020, the focus was largely on data from December 2020 to October 2021. The period was chosen intentionally as vaccines were made accessible to a large number of people during this period.
As per data, 77 per cent of the pregnant women were tested positive for COVID-19 were unvaccinated. Also, 91 per cent of COVID-19 hospitalizations and 98 per cent of critical care admissions were reported in those who were not vaccinated and tested positive. According to the study, ‘all baby deaths’ were reported in corona positive women who were not vaccinated.
“Our findings emphasize the need for continued efforts to increase vaccination uptake in pregnant women,” the authors of the study said. They added that this is why more focus needs to be given on vaccine hesitancy during pregnancy.
“It is imperative to protect the health of women and babies in the ongoing pandemic,” the authors said addressing the problem.
The study said that around 26,000 vaccines were distributed to almost 18,500 pregnant women during the vaccination drive in Scotland from December 8, 2020, to October 31, 2021. Despite this, only around 32 per cent of pregnant women in the age group of 18 to 44 years were fully vaccinated. This is when around 77 per cent of the total women population in that age group were fully vaccinated. The Scottish study comes at a time when the number of COVID-19 cases is once again on the rise around the globe.